Dartford Brent

Dartford Brent

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Dartford Brent

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Dartford Brent was an extensive area of common land on the outskirts of Dartford in Kent. In history, it was the scene of a confrontation between King Henry VI and Richard Plantagenet, 3rd Duke of York in 1452; and in 1555 thousands of spectators were to witness the burning to death at the stake of Christopher Ward, a Dartford linen weaver, executed for his Protestant faith.

Part of Dartford Brent was a famous major cricket venue in the 18th century and it was almost certainly in use in during the 17th century also. It was noted for the quality of its turf, which was said to be "as smooth as a bowling green" .

Major cricket venue

Major cricket was played at Dartford Brent all through the 18th century and numerous references have survived from 1709 to 1795.

The earliest known inter-county match took place there on 29 June 1709 when Kent and Surrey played against each other G B Buckley, Fresh Light on Pre-Victorian Cricket, Cotterell, 1937.

The match played 27, 28 and 29 August 1795 (Hampshire won by 4 wickets) was the last time Dartford Brent is known to have been used for a major match. Games in Dartford after 1795 were played at Bowman’s Lodge on nearby Dartford Heath Arthur Haygarth, Scores & Biographies, Volume 1 (1744-1826), Lillywhite, 1862.

Campaign against closure

According to the , an unsuccessful campaign was waged against the Brent's enclosure during the...
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